The Sound of Young America: Jeanne Darst, Author of Fiction Ruined My Family

Episode 71

28th October 2011

Jeanne Darst is a writer and performer whose work has appeared in the New York Times Magazine and This American Life. She recently published her first book, Fiction Ruined My Family, about her literary family who spent more time drinking than writing.

Episode notes

Jeanne Darst is a writer and performer who recently published a memoir of her family, alcoholism, creativity, and coming to a point of actually making your thing. It’s called Fiction Ruined My Family.

Jeanne grew up in a literary family whose description conjures up images of cocktail parties where brilliant creative minds are brushing up against one another. Her father aspired to literati status, so much so that reading popular fiction in his household constituted rebellion.

The part of their glamorous writing life that was missing? The actual writing, which was often overshadowed by alcoholism.

Jeanne talks to us about beginning a life of writing, acting and producing modeled on her family’s behavior — before realizing that being a functioning member of society and being an inspired creative person were not mutually exclusive.

In this episode...

Associate Producer
Associate Producer


  • Jeanne Darst

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Associate Producer

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